Page:Suppressed Gospels and Epistles.djvu/185

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WHEN I had prayed at home, and was sat down upon the bed, a certain man came in to me with a reverend look, in the habit of a Shepherd, clothed with a white cloak, having his bag upon his back, and his staff in his hand, and saluted me.

2 I returned his salutation, and immediately he sat down by me, and said unto me, I am sent by that venerable messenger, that I should dwell with thee all the remaining days of thy life.

3 But I thought that he was come to try me, and said unto him, Who are you? For I know to whom I am committed. He said unto me, Do you not know me? I answered no. I am, said he, that shepherd to whose care you are delivered.

4 Whilst he was yet speaking, his shape was changed; and when I knew that it was he to whom I was committed, I was ashamed, and a sudden fear came upon me, and I was utterly overcome with sadness, because I had spoken so foolishly unto him.

5 But he said unto me, Be not ashamed, but receive strength in thy mind, through the commands which I am about to deliver unto thee. For, said he, I am sent to show unto thee all those things again, which thou hast seen before, but especially such of them as may be of most use unto thee.

6 And first of all write my Commands and Similitudes, the rest thou shall so write as I shall show unto thee. But I therefore bid thee first of all write my Commands and Similitudes, that by often reading of them thou mayest the more easily [1]keep them in memory.

7 Whereupon I wrote his Commands and Similitudes, as he bade me.

8 Which things if when you have heard, ye shall observe to do them, and shall walk according to them, and exercise yourselves in them with a pure mind, ye shall receive from the Lord those things which he has promised unto you.

9 But if having heard them ye shall not repent, but shall still go on to add to your sins, [2]ye shall be punished by him.

10 All these things that Shepherd, the angel of repentance, commanded me to write.


Of believing in one God.

FIRST of [3]all believe that there is one God who created and brought all things out of nothing into existence.

2 He comprehends all things, and is only infinite, not to be comprehended by any.

3 Who can neither be defined by any words, nor conceived by the mind.

4 Therefore believe in him, and fear him; and fearing him [4]abstain from all evil.

5 Keep these things, and cast all [5]lust and iniquity far from thee, and put on righteousness, and thou shalt live to God, if thou shalt keep his commandment.


That we must avoid detraction, and do our alms-deeds with simplicity.
  1. Observe them, Custodite possis. Lat.
  2. Adversa recipietis.
  3. Irenæus. 1. 1. c. 3. Origen, de Princ. 1. 1. c. 8. Euseb. Hist. Eccles. 1. 5. c. 8. Athanas. de Incarn. Verb. &c.
  4. Habe abstinentiam.
  5. Omnem concupiscentiam.